• Annette Nilsson

Pressure creates diamonds

It is the name of an album which I listen to quite often, and I was more focused on the songs, than on the name of the album. At first, I thought, yes, tough, you need pressure to bring out the best in you, shine like a diamond or something like that.

On second thoughts, it brought on my opposition reflex. That means, the more I am pushed into something, the more I resist. And I was wondering, with everything going on around us, uncertainty and unpredictabilities, do we really need more pressure or would it be already really great if we just would hang in there?


Working with clients who are under high pressure to perform, it is always interesting to see how the horses react to those clients. Horses by nature yield from pressure, that means they try to avoid pressure. To resist or fight any form of pressure consumes valuable energy which they - as prey animals - need in case of flight. So they try to avoid pressure.

Many people are not aware under how much pressure, i.e. stress they are right now. Horses are perfect stress-detectors and will give honest, non-jugdemental and unbiased feedback. The very moment, we are open to acknowledge this feedback, pressure ceases, stress is reduced and the willingness of the horse to connect brings peace and ease. And we do not necessarily be with horses, just taking a moment and assess your current state of being is an important step in taking better care of yourself.

It is important to reflect on your beliefs: do you agree with the quote? Do you maybe think that we need to toughen up and that burn-out means that at least you burnt at some point which sounds sort of heroic, tough and necessary for success?

Or do you dare to challenge your beliefs, take your own needs seriously and start to truly care for your self? We have still a long way ahead before life resumes to normal - whatever that normal might look like. Like in all seriously challenging situations there is a promise of learning and experiencing something we otherwise would not have been able to. To me, it is the opportunity to truly reflect on yourself, on your needs and to take them seriously. The better the relationship with yourself, the more you are prepared for whatever the future holds.


  • what do you truly enjoy?

  • do you take time just for yourself without feeling guilty?

  • which rituals or routines are important to you?

  • what are you looking forward to?

  • what could be a first small steps towards taking better care of yourself?

  • are you free to make your own choices?

  • can you be yourself and trust that you are loved just as you are?


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